THIS IS SAFETY PROFESSION AND NOT POLICING - Hybrid Group

The aim of safety work is not to judge people for not doing things safely, but to try to understand why it made sense for people to do what they did against the background of their engineered and psychological work environment. If it made sense to them, it will for others too. Merely judging them for doing something undesirable is going to pass over that much broader lesson, over the thing that your organization needs to do to learn and improve – Sidney Dekker.

Distinguishing between policing and safety is as given:

  • An emphasis on blame wherever accidents occur, as opposed to identifying direct and indirect causes.
  • Little or no information, instruction and training for staff, with the firmly held view that ‘health and safety’s all a matter of common sense!’
  • Inadequate communication and consultation, where people who raise health and safety issues with management are perceived as ‘troublemakers’.
  • The absence of formal procedures for ensuring safe working, such as permit-to-work systems and the training and appointment of competent persons and where the manager who holds the health and safety advisory function is untrained, unclear as to his role and function as the ‘health and safety person’ and who merely reacts to situations sooner than taking measures to prevent these situations arising.
  • Legal reason for ensuring health and safety is of more importance than the moral (ethical) reason.

Competence is the ability to recognize the risks in operational activities and then apply the right measures to control and manage those risks – Judith Hackitt.

The competency level of an health and safety practitioner determines what he or she practices – Safety or Policing.

WE ARE SAFETY PROFESSIONALS/PRACTITIONERS AND NOT POLICE OFFICERS.

4 Replies to “THIS IS SAFETY PROFESSION AND NOT POLICING”

Agada Sunday Opeoluwa says:

I concur with this write up, actually Safety officer is not a police officer. In a process when the workers continue repeating unsafe practices and remain adamant to comply with the lay down hSE policies. What could be done by the safety officer in charge of the site to avoid reoccurrence?

Ifeoluwa Adeniji says:

Hi Opeoluwa, if so be the case, why not focus more on culture than just Compliance. Engage the workers to understand why they repeatedly practice unsafe act. What also is the management commitment, i hope it is not just the written policy but walk the talk.

Israel Ojo-Arome says:

Awesome article. Safety and not Policing.

Ocheze Njoku says:

Wonderful write up. We implement policies to safeguard people, environment and assets. We are not police officers. Safety profession is a noble course that endures you work safe today so you could work tomorrow.

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